Good Night from Me and Goodnight From Dr Seuss

How did it get so late so soon? Its night before its afternoon. December is here before its June. My goodness how the time has flewn. How did it get so late so soon? 

 –  Dr Seuss

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Today I Read 350 Emails and Smiled A Lot

Last night my two-almost-three year old boy snuggled himself on my side of the bed. By the time I get to bed, he is stretched across the bed, but every now and then rolls over to the edge. I spend several hours tossing and turning only half asleep waiting for the ‘thud’ of him falling off the bed that is a million times bigger than him. By the time R returns from his late night out, Roo has been gently carried back to his own bed, eyes shut, head in my neck and as I tuck him under his duvet he makes a feeble effort to show his disapproval ‘i don’t wan go to my bed, I wan…zzzzzzzz’. 5:00am and he has climbed back between us. Next thing I know is Bella cuddled next to me hanging off the bed on the other side of me, talking non-stop. I figure it must be almost 7am due to her incessant questions and chatter. I glance at the clock after 10 minutes or so and find it is 5.45am. I am So Not Impressed.

3 hours and 15 minutes, two cups of coffee and a long shower later I am on the wrong bus going around the houses to take 25 minutes to drive what should be a 10 minute journey to work, for my first day after 5 weeks off sick due to sciatic nerve pain. It is a good job really as the other bus drops me outside The Hut where I would find it difficult to walk past without buying a Skinny Latte Extra Shot. That would be 4 caffeine shots before work and I am going to be wired enough anyway with the variety of painkillers I have taken with the first two, along with the lasting effects of amitriptyline from my nightly dose.

Wow! My office is bright! and noisy! By 10am my head is pounding with the lights, noise, and the 350 emails I have to read. I am not sure if this is the medication or just shock at being back at work after the relatively sedate time off sick. My boss comments that I am looking better than she has seen me for ages. Repeats this several times and says that the time off has done me good. She is trying to work out what is different. Make Up, I tell her. I am wearing make-up. I actually spent 30 minutes plastering it on in a way to make it look like I was wearing not a jot of make up apart from lipgloss and mascara, disguising the heavily medicated eyelids that even my thick framed glasses cannot hide and the dark circles and red blotchy skin. Well, it has worked I find out as several colleagues comment on how well I look. I am not sure whether that means I always looked rough before, or only when I was looking so ill with pain, but either way, they really do seem genuinely surprised that I look well. I decide on the latter and plaster on a beaming smile for every comment I get.

I sit on my old, alleged back pain specialist chair. This is not the one that was recommended by the back specialist assessment, the one that I later find out is going to cost £800+. This is the chair they have decided will do after all despite being recommended otherwise (I can’t figure out why they think this…). Except, when I sit in it and the pins and needles shoot from my left foot straight up my leg and into my buttock, my boss quickly changes her mind and 20 minutes later the approval for the new chair has been signed and sent off. But, they still won’t let me have red leather or an iPod charger. However it does recline. Bonus.

By the time I leave the office I am limping slightly and my head is pounding from the excessively fast-paced office, from struggling to focus on the computer screens, having to engage with people and on the whole being unused to Life On the Outside on my pain meds.

I am now watching Black Beauty with my children, tired but relieved that I got through my first day back with relatively little trouble and without falling asleep  or slurring my words in front of my colleagues. But I really must get myself some of those noise blocking ear protectors.

Shall I have a glass of wine to celebrate?

Something is Worrying Me.

Well, I never intended this blog to be so dam miserable. I do apologise. R said I should be careful not to be so bloody miserable people or else people will stop reading. I agree. But seeing as this is also a cathartic process for me. I need to get it all out. R is at work/buries his head in the sand when it comes to talking of the future. No-one in my entire world can probably bear to listen to me bang on about my back pain, and anyway ‘oh dear, poor you’ is Not Helpful. So I am going to moan away in my own words, in my own time to the www.

I am taking a ridiculous amount of medication. One of which is turning me into a goofball at night/in the morning. Despite being a walking pharmacy, my pain levels increase as the day wears on and by 5pm, I find walking too painful. My back, left leg/hip down to my feet, and both my calves and feet scream with hot pain, pins and needles when I sit from standing, stand from sitting. And I have not been being hugely active. I am not running a marathon. In fact for the last two days I have bee child free thanks to school and nursery. I have been careful but kept moving.

I am not at work. I have been off sick for almost 3 weeks struggling get my sciatic pain under control. Hence the nerve blockers. Since June I have been off sick more than I have been at work -when I was there I was mostly on reduced hours. My Boss is supportive. My colleagues are Fed up.

I am worried I will lose my job in the long-term, worried the long-term might be closer than I think, worried that if I can work will I have to reduce my hours for ever?  Can I work when I am a goofball? Will my colleagues now resent me? See me as unreliable, flakey, thinking about how much work I am causing rather than how I am? I have got no Get well card that is for sure. No kind messages of wellness. And we all know what lots of people think about colleagues with ‘back ache’ right? I have already seen my career damaged, having to put on hold a Diploma course that would eventually see a rise on the ladder. Is this going to ruin me completely?

So, I’m worried about Monday. I should be returning to work. I want to return.  I am scared of going back only to leave again because I can’t manage it, or do two weeks then it all goes wrong again. I am worried I won’t be able to get out of bed, and if I do I will be out of it on pain meds? I am worried I will just stare wildly at my colleagues, a dribbling mess while they make me a coffee. And then, I am worried my GP will sign me off again, and say I am not ready. I am worried I will tell her I am not ready. Because. Lets face it. If I go to work my day is going to be, wake up, zillion coffees, no conversation as I am too out of it. work, badly, home, lots of pain and somehow I need to be a mum then, sometimes on my own if R is working late shift. Can I even do that? Really?

I am scared of my future. I am a crap mum and I can’t do the job I have done for 10 years. The sadness I felt after being told I should avoid kayaking was nothing compared to the fear I have now of losing more than a hobby.

Tomorrow, I’m going to post something positive.